• Ana

2020-10-23>25 Syracuse, Sicily, Italy > Zakynthos, Greece

Time zone UTC + 0.00

Local time (Italy) + 2.00

Local time (Greece) + 3.00


09.30 - Departure from Syracuse, Sicily - 1 Reef on mainsail and full Jib

Coordinates 37º03’551N 15º16’812E


Heading: 75 degrees

Wind speed: 5 knots

Wind direction: 40 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 3 knots


With a forecast of stronger winds for later in the day (the ECMWF and ICON wind models didn’t agree on the wind speeds) and our experience of the previous passage with the new sails we decided to sail on a much more conservative approach.


12.15 - 1 Reef on mainsail and Code 0C

Coordinates 37º05’252N 15º32’798E


Heading: 80 degrees

Wind speed: 6.5 knots

Wind direction: 70 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 5.8 knots


16.20 - 1 Reef on mainsail and full Jib

Coordinates 37º08’831N 15º55’816E


Heading: 90 degrees

Wind speed: 9 knots

Wind direction: 110 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 4 knots

We avoid flying the Code 0C at night as it can be difficult to furl it in the dark.


22.00 - 1 Reef on mainsail and 3 Reefs on Jib

Coordinates 37º11’750N 16º28’879E


Heading: 85 degrees

Wind speed: 16 knots

Wind direction: 140 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 5 knots


As the wind shifts further downwind (past 140 degrees) the mainsail creates a wind "shadow" on the Jib making it start to collapse and flog. So we tried different points of reef to see what suits best for this sail angle and combination of sails.


05.00 - 1 Reef on mainsail and 1 Reefs on Jib

Coordinates 37º16’543N 17º14’987E


Heading: 80 degrees

Wind speed: 15 knots

Wind direction: 140 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 5 knots


3 Reefs on the Jib seemed too much so we decided to try only 1 Reef to see if that was enough to overcome the wind "shadow" of the mainsail.

07.00 - 1 Reef on mainsail and 2 Reefs on Jib

Coordinates 37º17’966N 17º27’592E


Heading: 80 degrees

Wind speed: 16 knots

Wind direction: 140 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 10%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 5.4 knots


1 Reef on the Jib still seems to be too much sail out and we still get some flogging on the headsail and it doesn’t hold its shape nicely.

2 Reefs on the Jib seems to hold shape more nicely and we got better speeds on the same conditions than with 1 or 3 Reefs.


13.15 - 1 Reef on mainsail and full Jib

Coordinates 37º20’129N 18º06’867E


Heading: 80 degrees

Wind speed: 12.5 knots

Wind direction: 110 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 30%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 5 knots


20.30 - 1 Reef on mainsail - engine on

Coordinates 37º30’060N 19º01’681E


Heading: 75 degrees

Wind speed: 5 knots

Wind direction: 50 degrees starboard

Cloud coverage: 30%

Visibility: 90%

Sea state: calm

SOG: 6 knots


11.00 - First arrival attempt


Just as we were motoring the last 2 nautical miles approaching to the island of Zakynthos and after having dropped the mainsail because there was absolutely no wind, not even enough to use the mainsail for stability we entered a wind acceleration zone as we were about to cross the path of a few cargo ships.

Winds gusting between 15-18 knots.

Our first anchorage for the arrival was a no go after we entered and checked the surroundings. There were mooring balls of dubious quality and in very close positions not allowing us to anchor. We had to exit the protection of the anchorage back into the acceleration zone heading north now, around the island.

The winds were now gusting 20 knots and as we turned around the north of the island they increased to 25knots and eventually almost up to 30knots.

As we turned around the northeast cape of the island we got some protection from the cape and found a new anchorage.

12.00 - Arrival to Ag. Nikólaus - Zakynthos

Coordinates 37º54’373N 20º42’463E


Oh, and John caught 3 Bonito Tunas and 1 Mahi-Mahi!


Total hours of the trip: 50h

Total hours sailing: 6h

Total hours motoring: 2h

Total hours motor-sailing: 2h

Maximum Speed Over Ground: 8.8 knots

Average Speed: 5.5knots

Distance: 276.4nm



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